We have been running our Fleece to Felt weeks for over five years now and due to their great success we have developed our Dye to Spin week. A residential week here in the Highlands of Scotland where guests can learn the whole process, which leads them finally to hand spinning their own wool. We start the week watching a hand-shearing demonstration, which is then followed by sessions learning how to process fleece; washing, sorting and carding. The next step is learning about natural dyes, foraging for dye plants, making dyes and dyeing the fleece, over open outdoor fires -the traditional way. We also spend some time exploring the area, giving guests time to enjoy the beauty of glen Affric and the stunning waterfalls at Plodda. The last two days of the course are spent with Bridie, learning or improving hand spinning skills. Bridie has been teaching hand spinning classes in Ullapool for many years and we are so excited to have her join us for the week. Complete beginners often find it easier working in pairs, watching and helping one another, while Bridie also guides them through the initial steps. Improvers are welcome to bring their own wheels or use one of ours.
We mostly use Shetland fleeces on our courses, but there will be opportunities to look at other fleeces found across Scotland. We find Shetland sheep easy to work with, as they are small and hardy and they give a soft, versatile fleece. Shetland fleece is also a great beginner fleece when learning to hand spin.
It is amazing what we manage to achieve in a week…from shearing, right through to colourful hand spun yarn. Completing this whole process in a week, will give participants the confidence and time to kick start a new skill. The week takes you through all the steps you need to start processing your own fleeces from scratch, a very satisfying and enjoyable process to be part of and understand; giving guests the chance to learn ancient skills they can improve on and take away, as well as offering a wonderful experience and a relaxing holiday.
Create beautiful hand-spun yarn from scratch and have wonderful relaxing Highland experience as you do it!
During the week you will stay in the Stalkers wing of Kerrow house, which is a beautiful old property, that has been lovingly restored by Liz and John. Stalkers has a traditional farmhouse style kitchen and a cosy living room with a wood burner, perfect for relaxing evenings, sewing, spinning or needle felting. There are a range of bedrooms including; doubles, twins and singles. Kerrow is surrounded by fields and woods, with lots of lovely spots to head off for a walk. Liz keeps two Shetland ponies, so it is always worth carrying a packet of polos!
All meals are included in the week and we use locally sourced ingredients wherever possible, giving you a chance to sample some of the local delicacies including; haddock, venison, homemade breads & jams; oatcakes as well as vegetarian options.
Prices start at £895 (to share a twin room), £995 (double room), £1045 (double room ensuite).
We have just added an extra Dye to Spin course, which is a little shorter, starting on a Monday and finishing on a Saturday (August 14th-19th). This course will include two days of natural dyeing and two days of hand spinning with Bridie. Guests will stay in the Stalkers wing of Kerrow house (please see our accommodation pages). Prices start at £650 (to share a twin room), £700 (small single) £750 (double room).